Webtrends Buys Social, Mobile Marketer Transpond

Online analytics company Webtrends is getting an instant boost in marketing to Facebook users and iPhone owners with it’s acquisition of app platform provider Transpond. Webtrends sees the acquisition as a complement to last year’s purchase of landing page optimizer Widemile (now “Webtrends Optimize”). The terms of this deal weren’t disclosed.

San Francisco, C.A.-based Transpond’s platform is marketed as an easy way for non-programmers to create, publish, manage and track “experiences” across social and mobile sites. For Portland, O.R.-based Webtrends, it represents an extension of its measurement and management of Facebook.

The two have created Webtrends Apps, which will allow the company extend its analytics of Facebook usage across the iPhone/iPad, Android, and other platforms.

The move comes as companies from Google (NSDQ: GOOG) to Nielsen have been expanding their efforts to tie analytics to social media. Ad agencies are responding to clients’ demands for more social media insight as well. Last month, Interpublic Group’s Universal McCann created a social media unit called Rally, with the intent of assisting marketers develop campaigns, monitor online buzz about brands and measure how those campaigns perform.

While it seems like the space is fairly well covered, it’s still considered largely experimental for most marketers, even as Nielsen has found that consumers spend about 23 percent of their time on social nets.

So while Webtrends Apps’ promise of simplicity will certainly appeal to marketers who don’t want the headache of creating Facebook apps in-house or hiring an over-priced firm to manage it all for them, until the company and its competitors can find ways to ease consumers’ privacy worries, ad spending on social nets will lag the amount of time users spend there.